The Sawback Trail goes from the town of Banff to Lake Louise following the rugged Sawback range over a distance of 74km (about 45 miles). Many hikers take this as a four to five day hike, although this post will reflect a more leisurely hike with frequent stops over a longer period. There are several campgrounds to stay an extra day to explore other trails that branch off the main trail.
On Day 2 the hike covers a distance of about 12km with the trail leaving the Mount Cockscomb campground at the 8.2km mark.
[9- Mt Louis]
The hike to the Mystic Valley campground has little elevation gain with the trail in a forested area.
The Mystic Valley campground is located at roughly the 18.5 km mark where the hiker will find 5 campsites and an outhouse. Campfires are allowed.
[10-Sign for Mystic Lake and campground]
A short distance farther down the trail is the Mystic Pass Junction followed by the Mystic Pass Warden Cabins.
[11-Creek at Mystic Lake - click to enlarge]
The next stop is Mystic Lake where the hiker can fish for trout, perhaps catching one for their supper while spending the night at the campground.
[12 - Mystic Lake - click to enlarge]
[13 - Mystic Lake - click to enlarge]
For those who would prefer to ride to Mystic Lake there are several outfitters who provide backcountry trips, some of which are overnighters.